This was something I wrote a couple of days ago on my birthday...
Well here it is, another day equating to another year – 48 on this end – and I thought it appropriate to make a few comments on what I have learned in these past 365 days. I have found a great strength in three phrases, and I think heading into the New Year they will be solid thoughts for you as well. 2010 has been a very trying year for me personally, and these words were truly important during those tests. And at the end of the day I'm sitting here with a confident smile on my face and a great expectation of things to come!
Good feeds good, bad feeds bad.
To me this phrase really speaks to how you approach any given situation. We all have a choice: do you want to take the high road (positive) or seemingly far easier low road (negative)? Because once you get that ball rolling downhill, it gains its own momentum, good or bad. Make no mistake, taking the high road is a bitch at times, but it was some of THE best advice I received, and if you’re sincere about it you simply know you’re on the right path. Out of crisis, it quickly moves into how you interact with all your relationships, from family to friends to co-workers. Think about people you perceive to be constantly happy or tragically down all the time. I’ll bet it’s how they approach their lives and situations that makes the real difference, like I said, we all have a choice no matter what we face.
Appreciate what you have, don’t regret what you don’t.
I’ll admit this one was a lot harder at first to put into practice, especially in the last part of the year. But it’s true, true, true. We are a blessed people, my friends. We are connected to our loved ones in so many ways, we have ridiculous amounts of material goods, and we live in a society that essentially lets us do whatever our heart desires. But where do we often focus? On what we don’t have. Negativity is so often the hook, whether it’s the news (if it bleeds it leads), product marketing (completely targeted to make you feel a sense of loss), and even in our relationships (i.e. if you’re not in a perfect one, you should be).
I have been very fortunate to walk / run many miles this year around our Town Lake Trail here in Austin. Every day I am inspired by people I see, and it is also such a time of healing. From elite athletes to disabled people to an elderly couple who have both had strokes, holding onto each other so they can make it around together – they show me daily the strength of the human spirit. And that’s just on a dirt trail around a dammed up river! So find some positive inspiration, take stock of what’s good in your life, and toss the negative crap in the trash where it belongs.
Some times in life you gotta be tough.
I think I first saw this quote attributed to John Wayne, and I’m comfortable with that. As an actor he embodied on the big screen what it meant to do what’s right, even in the hardest of times. A current similar phrase is, “Man Up,” and I agree. Guys, we need to be better men. Treat everyone with respect, do what’s right, and be able to look yourself in the mirror and know that deep down you’re a good guy. If you can’t do that, get on it: some times in life you gotta be tough.
It’s a new year and I don’t know about you, but I plan on absolutely making the best of it. I’ve been blessed with 14+ years after cancer, great kids, and there’s still plenty of time to make it happen! So cheers to a great 2011 – and hey, what are some phrases that you rely on? We can all use a little inspiration after all – ciao for now! – Cb…